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Jimmie Johnson Rises to the Ranks of Hall of Famers with Record Seventh Championship

November 21, 2016

Johnson’s win on Sunday ties NASCAR Hall of Famers Richard Petty and Dale Earnhardt for the highest number of NASCAR premier series championships

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (Nov. 21, 2016) – Jimmie Johnson’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Series championship win on Sunday at Homestead-Miami Speedway marks his seventh championship, tying inaugural NASCAR Hall of Famers Dale Earnhardt and Richard Petty for all-time career championships in the NASCAR premier series. Johnson’s title this weekend came in his 543rd start, 10 seasons after his first championship win, making it the shortest period of time between first and seventh titles. Earnhardt captured his seventh title 14 seasons after his first and Petty 15 seasons after his first.

“There are few accomplishments in a sport that many think will never be equaled and achievements that place athletes in extremely elite and rare company. Jimmie Johnson’s seventh championship tying Richard Petty and Dale Earnhardt is clearly one of those elite achievements,” says NASCAR Hall of Fame Executive Director Winston Kelley.

Johnson also captured the spot of youngest driver of the three to reach seven championships at 41 years old. Petty and Earnhardt gained seven championship wins at 42 and 43, respectively. In March of this year, Johnson passed Earnhardt on the all-time wins list when he captured his 77th win at Auto Club Speedway. After Sunday, he remains seventh on the all-time wins list with 80 wins, just behind 2012 NASCAR Hall of Famer Cale Yarborough with 83 wins. 

He is the only driver in series history to qualify for all 13 Chases he was eligible for. During the 2016 season, he won five races, including wins at Atlanta Motor Speedway, Auto Club Speedway, Charlotte Motor Speedway, Martinsville Speedway and now Homestead-Miami Speedway. This was his first season to qualify for the Championship 4 since the new Chase format was introduced.

Johnson's crew chief Chad Knaus also secured his seventh championship this Sunday, placing him just behind 2012 NASCAR Hall of Famer Dale Inman, who has eight – seven with Petty and one with 2016 NASCAR Hall of Famer Terry Labonte.

“As participants and fans of NASCAR, we have been able to witness an amazing piece of NASCAR history through what Jimmie and the entire Hendrick Motorsports organization have accomplished over the last 11 years. And for his record-tying seventh championship to come in the same year as Mr. Hendrick’s selection to the NASCAR Hall of Fame is particularly special and seems especially poignant,” says Kelley.

Rick Hendrick will be honored the 2017 NASCAR Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony on Friday, Jan. 20, 2017, along with Richard Childress, Mark Martin, Raymond Parks and Benny Parsons. Johnson’s win brings Hendrick’s tally to 12 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series car owner championship titles, ranking the most of all time.

Along with Hendrick's Hall of Honor display, artifacts celebrating Johnson's history-making championship season will be on display at the NASCAR Hall of Fame in 2017.

Individual ticket and ticket packages for the 2017 NASCAR Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony are available at Ticketmaster.com or by calling 800-745-3000. For accessible seating, please call 704-654-4400. For more information about Induction weekend, visit nascarhall.com/inductees/induction-ceremony.

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About the NASCAR Hall of Fame
Conveniently located in Uptown Charlotte, North Carolina, the NASCAR Hall of Fame is an interactive entertainment attraction honoring the history and heritage of NASCAR. The high-tech venue, designed to educate and entertain race fans and non-fans alike, opened May 11, 2010, and includes artifacts, hands-on exhibits, a 278-person state-of-the-art theater, Hall of Honor, Buffalo Wild Wings restaurant, NASCAR Hall of Fame Gear Shop and NASCAR Productions-operated broadcast studio. The venue is open 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. seven days a week (Note: Winter operating hours are Nov. 1 – March 31 from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.) and has an attached parking garage on Brevard Street. The 5-acre site also includes a privately developed 19-story office tower and 102,000-square-foot expansion to the Charlotte Convention Center, highlighted by a 40,000-square-foot ballroom. The NASCAR Hall of Fame is owned by the City of Charlotte, licensed by NASCAR and operated by the Charlotte Regional Visitors Authority. For more information, visit nascarhall.com.

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